“I guess it went as well as expected under the circumstances,” Brennan told the Echo by phone from the Willacy County Processing Center in Raymondville.
What went especially well for Brennan was that he was able to address the judge in person.
Authorities had refused to allow Brennan make a physical court appearance but the immigration judge hearing the case, William Peterson, decided to hold the hearing in the facility.
Four witnesses testified on Brennan’s behalf, including his wife of 20 years, Joanna Volz.
Brennan’s life history, not least his 1983 escape from the Maze prison outside Belfast, was revealed during the hearing which was scheduled to last two days, but ran into a third.
Brennan said that the prosecution had been challenged as to why it wasn’t bringing terrorist charges against him. “They replied that they had chosen not to do so,” Brennan said.
On January 27 last, while driving with his wife to visit friends in Texas, Brennan was detained at an immigration checkpoint because his U.S.-issued work permit had expired. While he had applied to renew the document, authorities had not sent it to him. He has been held without bail since.
Brennan is battling in court to secure bail, avoid deportation and ultimately gain legal residence in the U.S.